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Principles for a Sustainable Landscape. Water-Efficient Landscaping is a Major Component of Sustainable Landscaping which: “meets the needs of today’s.

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Presentation on theme: "Principles for a Sustainable Landscape. Water-Efficient Landscaping is a Major Component of Sustainable Landscaping which: “meets the needs of today’s."— Presentation transcript:

1 Principles for a Sustainable Landscape

2 Water-Efficient Landscaping is a Major Component of Sustainable Landscaping which: “meets the needs of today’s population without diminishing the ability of future populations to meet their needs.”

3 Sustainable Landscapes – Incorporate plants suited for the climate – Conserve water – Nurture and protect soil – Prevent/reduce pest problems – Conserve energy/reduce Pollution – Encourage wildlife

4 Why Garden Sustainably? Save Money Improve Garden Health Protect Water Quality and Wildlife

5 Sustainable Landscaping…… Leaves a greener footprint for our children’s children

6 Sustainable Landscapes Incorporate plants suitable for climate/location Conserve water Nurture and protect soil Prevent/reduce pest problems Conserve energy/Reduce pollution Encourage wildlife

7 Select plants recommended for your Sunset Zone

8 And Microclimate (shade, etc.)

9 Microclimates Impact Plant Health and Water Use

10 Water Needs increase in Heat Islands Landscape plants in heat islands require up to 50% more water than the same species in park settings

11 Sustainable Landscapes Conserve Water Through: 1. Hydrozoning 2. Scheduling irrigations based on plant needs 3. Making sure sprinklers/drip systems work properly 4. Using mulch and soil amendments effectively

12 Hydrozone : Place plants with similar water needs together and irrigate them accordingly

13 Drip Irrigate Trees, Shrubs, and Gardens to Reduce Soil Evaporation and to Apply Water Directly into Root Zones

14 Warm-Season Lawns (Bermuda) Use Less Water than Cool-season Lawns (Tall Fescue) Lawn Watering Guide for California

15 To prevent water waste and brown spots in turf and groundcovers, repair leaks, low heads, broken sprinklers, unmatched sprinklers and pressure and spacing problems

16 If you Keep your Lawn, Grasscycle! Saves time/money Adds organic matter to lawn Recycles nutrients Reduces greenwaste in landfills

17 UC Verde (below)

18 CALLIANDRA CALIFORNICA BAJA FAIRY DUSTER Mature plants reach a size of 4 to 6 feet tall and wide. Baja red fairy duster does well in full sun or part shade, and is tolerant

19 St. Elmo’s Fire (Russelia) - 3’ by 4’ -Fast growing -Desert hardy

20 CA Natives for Lawn Replacement Ceanothus maritimus – Tolerates clay soil – Blue flowers – Low-growing, spreading

21 It’s More Than Just Cactus!

22 Parkinsonia hybrid ‘Desert Museum’ DESERT MUSEUM PALO VERDE Hybrid with a thornless sturdy structure and strong vertical form. Mature size: 25 feet to 30 feet with 20-foot spread. Spring flowers.

23 Ebanopsis ebano (Texas Ebony) Dense, dark green leaves and spiny twigs; great security barrier. Desirable tree for a small garden. Slow growth to 20 to 30 feet with a spread of 15 to 20 feet Fragrant, cream-colored flowers in late spring

24 Leather Leaf Acacia (Acacia craspedocarpa)

25 Desert Whitecap Evergreen perennial with large 4-inch white flowers. Blooms on and off but most prolific in spring. Plants form rounded clumps 1 to 1- 1/2’ feet high and 3’ wide.

26

27 Desert Trees and Shrubs for Windbreaks Acacia aneura, Mulga Acacia Brachychiton populneus, Bottle Tree Ceratonia siliqua, Carob Cupressus arizonica, Arizona Cypress Cupressus glabra 'Gareei', Rough Bark Cypress Eucalyptus microtheca, Coolibah Tree Eucalyptus spathulata, Swamp Malee Pinus eldarica, Afghan Pine Pinus pinea, Italian Stone Pine Rhus lancea, African Sumac

28 Water cycling may be necessary to avoid run- off. Divide the total amount of water required per day into 2-4 cycles. Apply water as close to initial event as possible before soil dries out.

29 Irrigate Deeply and Infrequently and Monitor Soil Moisture Soil sampling tubeSoil probe

30 Other Methods to Conserve Water in the Landscape

31 Minimize the use of water to clean sidewalks and driveways

32 Remove weeds that compete with landscape plants for water

33 Improve Water- Holding Capacity and/or Drainage with Compost Mixed Evenly into Soil (6” – 1’)

34 Don’t Let Water Get Away! Permeable surfaces Infiltration Basins Water Collection

35 Apply Mulch Around Plants

36 Mulch Conserves Water and Beautifies Landscapes

37 Avoid Over-fertilizing Creates flushes of weak growth Increases water requirement

38 Avoid Soil Compaction Keep construction activities several feet from landscape plantings Incorporate organic soil amendments (except for tree planting sites)

39 Soil Compaction Wastes water Decreases aeration/drainage/root growth Can result in fungal diseases Can result in plant decline and death

40 Irrigate Sloped Landscapes Slowly and Deeply to Prevent Runoff Prevents loss of valuable soil Prevents Pollution of Ground and Surface Waters

41 Principles of Sustainable Landscaping Climatically/microclimatically Selected Plants Water Efficient/Hydrozoned Pollution Friendly (water quality, noise, dust) Employs Integrated Pest Management Reduces, Recycles, and Reuses Greenwaste

42 It’s Recycling… Naturally

43 What is compost? Grass clippings Food scraps Leaves An organic soil conditioner created by decomposing organic matter under controlled conditions until it is stable enough to improve soils without harming plants or transmitting disease. Compost

44 The CA Waste Management Act (Assembly Bill 929) Divert 25% of organic matter destined for landfills by 1995Divert 25% of organic matter destined for landfills by 1995 Divert 50% by 2000Divert 50% by 2000 Divert 25% of organic matter destined for landfills by 1995Divert 25% of organic matter destined for landfills by 1995 Divert 50% by 2000Divert 50% by 2000

45 Limited landfill space should be reserved for materials that cannot be recycled or compostedLimited landfill space should be reserved for materials that cannot be recycled or composted Garbage handling is the 4 th largest expense for many cities.Garbage handling is the 4 th largest expense for many cities. Composted greenwaste benefits landscape plants and the environment Composted greenwaste benefits landscape plants and the environment Limited landfill space should be reserved for materials that cannot be recycled or compostedLimited landfill space should be reserved for materials that cannot be recycled or composted Garbage handling is the 4 th largest expense for many cities.Garbage handling is the 4 th largest expense for many cities. Composted greenwaste benefits landscape plants and the environment Composted greenwaste benefits landscape plants and the environment

46 Annual California Waste Disposal, Diversion and Generation

47 Composting Yard Wastes In CA, yard wastes are the largest component of municipal waste Grass clippings comprise approximately half of the yard trimmings deposited in state landfills. An average California turf area produces 300 to 400 pounds of grass clippings per 1,000 square feet annually (up to 8 tons per acre).

48 High Quality Soils Good Physical Properties (structure and texture) Adequate Nutrients (N, P, K, etc.) Healthy Biota (beneficial microbes that decompose organic matter and cycle nutrients and mycorrhizae) Adequate Organic Matter

49 Soil Textures

50 Soil Textures (Types)

51 Compost Improves soil tilth Improves water and nutrient holding capacity Improves drainage in heavy soils Prevents/reduces erosion Improves soil aeration May decrease chemical fertilizer requirement Remediates chemically damaged soils Increases number and range of microbes Filters storm water runoff

52 Compost is Not a Fertilizer Nitrogen and phosphorus are mostly in organic forms – Released slowly to plants – Not readily leached from the topsoil Compost contains many trace nutrients that are essential for plant growth

53 Creating Quality Compost Compost is generated when organic matter is consumed and decomposed by microbes under favorable conditions – Nutrient balance – Moisture – Temperature – Aeration

54 When is Compost Mature? Dark brown Crumbly, loose, and humus-like Earthy smell Contains no readily recognizable feedstock The pile has shrunk to about 1/3 of its original volume

55 Stability and Maturity of Finished Compost Bag test: sealing compost in a plastic bag for several days should produce no foul odor Germination test: radish or fast germinating seeds

56 Compost Quality, Testing, and Use Standards End uses (eg: soil amendment, mulch) depend on compost physical, chemical, and biological qualities Selecting the right product very important for success Fortunately, standards have been developed to guarantee product consistency

57 US Composting Council Quality Assurance During the 1990’s labs used different testing procedures and tests that were not comparable among labs Standardized testing procedures developed in 2000

58 Three Components: TMECC: Test Methods for the Evaluation of Composting and Compost STA: Seal of Testing Assurance Program CAP: Compost Analysis Proficiency Program

59 Three Components: TMECC: Test Methods for the Evaluation of Composting and Compost STA: Seal of Testing Assurance Program CAP: Compost Analysis Proficiency Program

60 ACP Compost Use Index Collaboration of the Association of Compost Producers and University of California for indexing composts based on their suitability for various uses Includes 14 test parameters

61 Preferred Ranges pH: 6.5 – 7.5 when used as a soil amendment Soluble Salts: Expressed as electrical conductivity (EC) in decisiemens per meter. EC values for composts and soils are not directly comparable. Many plants are damaged by soil ECs of greater than 2.0 dS/m. Trace Elements/Micronutrients: zinc, manganese, iron VS arsenic, cadmium, lead, mercury, etc.

62 Compost Uses in the Landscape Soil Amendment Mulch Turf topdressing Erosion Control Agent Water Quality Enhancer

63 Soil Amendment Most common landscape use Turf, groundcovers, shrubs, annual and perennial beds Not recommended for tree planting sites

64 Composted Greenwaste used as a Bermudagrass Soil Amendment

65

66 Figure 1. Composted greenwaste prior to amending into native sandy loam soil at University of California, Riverside.

67 Avoid root bound trees!

68 Soil Compaction

69 Amending Soil With Compost Amend entire planting site or bed when possible, adding at least 30% compost to original soil Or, dig hole at least 3 times the size of root ball Thoroughly mix compost at least 6 inches deep Plant at original depth (not too deep) Irrigate immediately and deeply

70 Compost Criteria for Use as Soil Amendment 95% should clear a 5/8” screen and at least 70% should clear a 3/8” screen Organic Matter content: 30 – 65% C:N ratio: 20:1 or lower pH: 6.0 – 8.5 Soluble Salts: sodium less than 25% of total

71 Criteria (Con’d) Moisture content: 30 – 60% Contaminants: (glass, plastic, metal) less than.5% by weight Maturity: Dark color and no offensive odor

72 Thank You! Janet Hartin Download and Use/Print PowerPoints


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